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Mass of Surprises

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I woke up one morning and thought, “The next time Steven goes to nine o’clock Mass, I’d like to go with him.” It was a surprising thought. I’ve been to Mass with Steven before and found it stuffy. Having the desire to attend such a service was baffling.

Steven was visibly surprised and pleased when I asked if I could go.

We load up Peter and head to Mass. It is a different church than I’ve gone to with him previously. I don’t know all the routines and responses. When Steven genuflects before entering the pew, I briefly wonder if I should. I don’t. Ultimately, I think it would be more disrespectful of me to do something I don’t understand.

Photo by Abdullah Ghatasheh on Pexels.com

We are there a few minutes early. The lights are dim. It’s quiet. Maybe a whisper is heard. Or Peter babbles. Some worshipers are kneeling in prayer. The stained glass is somewhat abstract. It evokes the elements for me. One window is shades of blue–cool, refreshing. Opposite, the window is yellow and orange giving warmth and comfort. Both working in concert, creating balance. I love these windows. I contemplate the refreshing comfort they provide me.

Surprising.

The priest enters; we stand. He blesses the congregants and begins the service. After attending several times the order is familiar. I participate as I am able. Some participation hindered by Peter; other by lack of knowledge. However, I don’t feel out of place.

Surprising.

Even as the priest speaks or the lector reads scripture, I am in awe of the quiet and how much I am comforted by it. There is no music and yet my soul is singing. I don’t even want music here. It would seem wrong somehow.

Surprising.

The Mass is not long. Less than forty-five minutes. I feel calm, full, my heart still and at peace.

A feeling I have been missing. I don’t understand it. I can’t explain it. God is meeting me in this new place, in this new experience, and I don’t even feel like I have to look for Him. He is just present with His stillness and peace and restoration.

And I am so surprised and grateful, I cry.

Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God Almighty!

God’s Gift: Protection

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Day 8 of Advent and God’s Gift

Bible Reading: Genesis 28:10-22

day8

Image: public domain {personally, one of my favorites that Steven chose}

God shows Jacob the connection between Heaven and Earth. So often, we fail to recognize that the two are intimately connected.  Jacob’s glimpse of this stairway, this constant moving between God’s realm and His creation, is a magnificent picture. 

What is noteworthy is the fact that Jacob went to sleep unaware of God’s presence in the new place.  He was unaware that God is always here and that this protection is always available. God reminds Jacob that He will watch over him wherever he goes.

And this same declaration is made for us.  God is here. Earth is the house of God. He watches over us night and day.

Thoughts for today:

Where do you turn when you are afraid or lonely?

How does that turning bring you comfort or help you feel protected?

Today, God is waiting for you to acknowledge His protection over His house.  Not just Earth, but you. Call out to Him for the comfort He provides in His protection during the uncertainty of waiting.